Now that John Kasich is planning a Town Hall in Vermont, I’ll be exploring his extremely conservative, and not very successful, record as Governor of Ohio. Enjoy.
Best of times, worst of times for Vermont Republicans. The good: they’ve finally got a credible, plausibly centrist candidate for governor — one who, in the mold of Jim Douglas, can put a smiley face on biz-friendly conservatism.
The bad: Oh, those presidential candidates.
Many in the VTGOP, glumly scanning the field, are latching onto Ohio Gov. John Kasich as the alleged “adult in the room,” the technocrat, the non-ideologue. I suppose we’ll see plenty of Vermont stalwarts at Kasich’s town hall on Saturday.
But to see John Kasich as anything other than a cookie-cutter conservative firebrand force-feeding the ALEC agenda to his home state, takes quite a bit of squinting. And wishful thinking.
Previously, I wrote about his fraudulent (literally) school-choice push, woeful jobs record, and how he has put the squeeze on local governments to save his state-budget bacon. Today, hey, it’s Planned Parenthood.
Kasich is stoutly anti-abortion. He and his Republican Legislature have seized upon those completely deceptive and thoroughly discredited Planned Parenthood sting videos, as a pretext for defunding the organization’s non-abortion services. Per Ohio Public Radio, the bill would strip away money for “cancer screenings, HIV tests, educational programs and more.”
Also, according to ThinkProgress, the bill is so vaguely worded that it may block funding for many other healthcare institutions, and even block health insurers from offering abortion coverage.
The Ohio Legislature passed the defunding bill last week. Kasich has already passed on one opportunity to sign the bill, for no stated reason. There is speculation that he’s going to have a big splashy signing ceremony just before the South Carolina primary, which might net him a handful of votes and ease him to — best case — a fourth-place finish, ahead of Jeb! and Dr. Sleepytime.
Great. Defunding Planned Parenthood as political stunt and desperate pander. That’s leadership we can all believe in. Not.
I sure hope he gets some close questioning about Planned Parenthood in Colchester. Indeed, I hope a whole bunch of women’s health activists pack the hall. That’s this Saturday morning at 11, in the Colchester High School Cafeteria. Bring your Right To Choose banners and maybe some vuvuzelas. Give him a nice warm Vermont liberal welcome.
John Kasich, reasonable centrist? It is to laugh.
Next: The biggest skeleton in Kasich’s closet.